Independent presidential candidate John Anderson may cause the first Republican presidential victory in Massachusetts since 1952, Terry Straub, manager of President Carter's Bay State re-election campaign, said yesterday.
Straub told a small group of college reporters at campaign headquarters in Boston that the independent presidential candidate draws approximately eight out of his every nine votes from Carter, and that Anderson has no chance of winning Massachusetts or the country.
"I appreciate the temptation for a protest vote. But anyone who can tell me that they're voting for John Anderson as a protest has an elitist attitude. Your colleagues won't be the ones to suffer from a Ronald Reagan presidency," Straub said.
Straub predicted that Anderson's popularity will continually decline through election day. "His record as a congressman belies what he's saying." Straub said.
The campaign manager said he can't imagine Carter's re-election without a Massachusetts victory.
Carter's visit to Boston Wednesday purposely and effectively targeted an "unstable constituent group," the elderly, and demonstrated intra-party unity, Straub said.
Senator Edward M. Kennedy '54 (D-Mass.), Rep. Thomas P. O'Neill (D-Mass.) and other prominent Massachusetts Democrats appeared with Carter.
"All of these elements have agreed that Jimmy Carter is the person they strongly support. After November it will get hot and heavy again," Straub said.
Humberto Cardinal Medeiros' recent statement urging parishioners against voting for pro-abortion candidates has not affected Carter's popularity, Straub added.
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